Lady Blujays VB runner-up at Rock Hills Tournament

MANKATO – The No. 7 state ranked St. John’s/Tipton Lady Blujays competed in the Rock Hills Invitational Volleyball Tournament in Mankato over the weekend. The team improved its overall record to 19-6, and finished as the runner-up to Thunder Ridge in a match-up of two top 10 state ranked squads.

In their opening match, the Lady Jays cruised past Pike Valley 25-14 and 25-22. Elle and Kara Eilert each posted five kills and combined for three blocks in the match. Kara Eilert also had three service aces. Elle Eilert led the team in digs with three as Lauryn Dubbert, Lyddia Eilert and Kara Eilert each had two. Cailyn Strong had all 13 of the teams assists in the victory.

Next up, it was time to face-off with host team Rock Hills. The Lady Grizzlies were no match for St. John’s/Tipton who won again in straight sets, 25-9 and 25-17. Kara Eilert had another strong game with six kills, five serve receives, four blocks and three aces. Elle Eilert had three blocks, three serve receives and two kills. Strong kept the hitters happy with 12 more assists.

In their third match, the Lady Blujays continued to roll with another two-set victory. This time over Logan 25-22 and 25-15. Elle Eilert had three kills in the game, and added a team high eight blocks. She also led the team with 14 serve receives. Kara Eilert had nine kills, four blocks, four aces and a pair of digs. Strong continued to set-up her teammates with 13 assists. Elle Eilert tallied 14 serve receives and Claire Pastrovich had 11.

In the semifinals, versus Clifton-Clyde, St. John’s/Tipton dropped their first set of the day. They won the first set 25-21 before dropping the second 22-25. They bounced back in the third with a 25-19 win clincher. Kara Eilert hit double digits in kills for the first time in the tournament with 10. Avery Gates added seven, and Elle Eilert had four on the attack. Kara Eilert also had seven blocks to Elle Eilert’s four. Elle also had four digs to lead the squad. Strong posted another 15 assists. The team had four players in with 11 or more serve receptions. Kara Eilert had 13. Pastrovich and Gates had 12 each, and Elle Eilert accounted for the 11.

The victory pitted the Lady Blujays against the state No. 6 ranked Thunder Ridge Lady Longhorns. The Lady Blujays came out flat in the first set and got pounded 25-7. In a much more competitive second set, St. John’s/Tipton fared much better but dropped a 20-25 decision as Thunder Ridge took the tournament championship.

Kara Eilert led the team in kills, once again, with eight and blocks with four. Elle Eilert added four kills, three blocks and a trio of digs. Strong kept her streak of double figure assists in tact for the tournament with 10. Pastovich led the team in serve receives with 15 followed by Kara Eilert with 11.

The Lady Jays are now 19-6 overall and traveled to Lincoln on Tuesday for a triangular with the Lady Leopards and Wilson.

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